At 130 m altitude between the Provencal Alps and the Mediterranean beaches, Carcès is in the center of the Var, built on a hill at the confluence of the Argens and Caramy rivers.
The old village of Carcès spirals around its medieval château.
Established by the Lords of Chateaurenard in the 11th century, the castle was a strategic Romanesque structure built on high ground overlooking the confluence of the Argens and Carami rivers. It was taken over by the de Pontevès family, who ruled the village and surrounding territories for over four centuries, particularly Bargème. In 1656, on the death of Jean VI de Pontevès, who had no direct descendants, his cousin François de Simiane, Marquis de Gordes and Comte de Carcès inherited all his property. His daughter, Anne-Thérése de Simiane, Marquise de Gordes, succeeded him as Comtesse de Carcès. On his death, the de la Tour d'Auvergne family succeeded him, followed by the Rohan Soubise family, whose daughter Charlotte married Louis Joseph de Bourbon, Prince de Condé, Comte de Carcès, who emigrated during the French Revolution. On August 17, 1830, he was found hanged in his château. His son Louis Antoine de Condé, Duc d'Enghien, was shot in the ditches of Vincennes on Napoleon's orders.
All that remains today are the ruins of the château that welcomed Louis XIV and his court on February 23, 1660.
It was destroyed after the Second World War. All that remains today is the skeleton of two three-storey buildings that were built at right-angles to the octagonal staircase...
It was renovated in the 2000s to house a beautiful exhibition hall and is topped by an open-air theater... .
Carcès offers a number of curiosities, not least its many houses with glazed tile facades, which add a special charm and character. Other trompe-l'oeil facades tell the story of the village's history.
The many glazed tile "scale" facades are more likely to be found on the eastern side of the houses, to protect them from seepage caused by the sometimes violent storms. They date back to the 18th century.
Some of them are still preserved and carefully maintained.
Also worth seeing are the 20 fountains in the village, notably the Fountain of the 4 Seasons, not forgetting the old Place Forte and the Clock Tower...
Water in Carcès
The 100-hectare Lac de Carcès on the outskirts of the village is fed by six rivers, bringing peace and serenity to the landscape. On the shores of the lake, families come to picnic on sunny days.
With its 8 km of shoreline, it's a veritable paradise for anglers.
Thanks to the 4 rivers that refresh it - the Argens, Issole, Caramy and Bresque - Carcès is a mecca for freshwater fishing of all kinds.
And don't miss the beautiful Caramy waterfalls.
The wine cooperative
Known as Le Hameau des Vignerons since 1910, this is the 3rd largest cooperative winery in the Var, with 600 ha of vines. Production is mainly devoted to Rosé. The Hameau store welcomes the public for wine tasting and sales.
The legend of the Cabro d'Or
The legend dates back to the time of the Saracens, when, on a full moon and a Mistral wind, the silhouette of a goat that no shepherdess had managed to catch to sell her milk would be silhouetted against the stones of the château, and that following it would lead directly to the famous treasure of the Cabro d'Or, said to have been buried by the Templars...
The treasure has yet to be found, but you never know...
To better appreciate Carcès, tours are available such as the frescoes and fountains circuit and the "2 days of pilgrimage Louis XIV style", where you can discover Carcès and its emblematic sites in the manner of Louis XIV, during his trip to Provence in 1660.
Carcès Town Hall
31 rue Maréchal Foch
Tel.: 04 94 04 50 14